Jason Kemper, Director of Planning Email
Michael Valentine, Senior Planner – Email
Jeffrey R. Williams, Planner Email
Troy Hilts, GIS Specialist – Email
Nisha Merchant, Confidential Secretary – Email

50 West High Street ¦ Ballston Spa, NY 12020

Phone: (518) 884-4705
Fax: (518) 884-4780

Hours: Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm

depticon2Department Description

The primary duty of the Saratoga County Planning Department is assisting the county’s 19 towns, 2 cities, and 9 villages in the administration of their land-use ordinances as effectively as possible.  The Planning Department and Planning Board always strive to strike a balance between the interests of the public and the rights of private property owners.  One of its primary roles is to provide technical assistance in the area of planning and zoning to local legislative boards, planning and zoning boards of appeals and building inspectors, attorneys and planners involved in the land development process.

Under General Municipal Law Section 239, the county planning board has jurisdictional review of subdivisions and zoning actions that are located within 500 feet of state or county right-of-way, municipal boundary, or located in an agricultural district.  In its review the county planning board must, by law, consider the compatibility of various land uses with one another; the effect of traffic generation on other land uses; the adequacy of existing and proposed thoroughfare facilities; impact of proposed land uses on existing and proposed private or municipal uses.  The protection of community appearance and character, as regards to predominant land uses, population density, and the relation between residential and non-residential areas is also considered.  Another important responsibility is the review of official development policies as may be expressed through comprehensive plans, capital programs, or regulatory measures.

Saratoga  County Planning Board

New York State General Municipal Law Article B, Sections 239-m and 239-n require municipal boards to refer certain planning actions to the County Planning Board for review before taking final action. The purposes of these laws are to encourage local decision-makers to consider the countywide and inter-municipal impacts of their local land use decisions.
Board Members:
  • Tom L. Lewis, Chairman
  • Devin Dal Pos
  • Donald McPherson
  • Ian Murray
  • Marcia E. Murray
  • Edwin Vopelak
  • Cynthia Young

What land use actions should be referred?

  • Adoption or amendment of a comprehensive plan
  • Adoption of amendment of a zoning ordinance or law
  • Issuance of special use permits
  • Approval of site places
  • Granting of use or area variances
  • Proposed subdivision plats
  • Moratoria
  • Other authorization which a referring body may issue under the provisions of any zoning ordinance or local law

Under what circumstances does a planning action need to be referred?

A proposed action is subject to review if the real property is within 500 feet of the following:

  • The boundary of any city, village or town.
  • The boundary of any existing or proposed county or state park or any other recreation area.
  • The right-of-way of any existing or proposed county or state parkway, thruway, expressway, road, or highway.
  • The existing of proposed right-of-way of any stream or drainage channel owned by the county or for which the county has established channel lines.
  • The existing or proposed boundary of any county or state owned land on which a public building or institution is situated.
  • The boundary of a farm operation located in an agricultural district, as defined by Article 25-AA of Agriculture and Markets Law.

The Saratoga County Planning Board meets on the third Thursday of every month. Please contact the County Planning Department with any questions you may have regarding referrals.

Saratoga County Planning Board 239 Referral Form

Agricultural Data Statement and Control Form

2022 Saratoga County Planning Board Meetings and Submittal Cut-Offs


2022 Meeting Agendas and Minutes

May 19, 2022 Minutes

April 21, 2022 – No meeting held.  Projects were reviewed under the Memo of Understanding.

March 17, 2022 Minutes

February 17, 2022 Minutes

January 20, 2022 Minutes


2021 Meeting Agendas and Minutes

December 16, 2021 Minutes

November 18, 2021 Minutes

October 21, 2021 Minutes

September 16, 2021 Minutes

August 19 2021 Meeting Minutes

July 15 2021 Meeting Minutes

June 17 2021 Meeting Minutes

May 20 2021 Meeting Minutes

April 15, 2021 Meeting Minutes

March 18, 2021 Meeting Minutes

February 18 2021 Meeting Minutes

January 21 2021 Meeting Minutes


2020 Meeting Agendas and Minutes

December 17, 2020 Meeting Minutes

November 19, 2020 Meeting Minutes

October 15, 2020 Meeting Minutes

September 17, 2020 Meeting Minutes

August 20, 2020 Meeting Minutes

July 16, 2020 Meeting Minutes

June 18, 2020 Meeting Minutes

March 19, 2020 Meeting Minutes


2019-2018 Meeting Agendas and Minutes


Annual Planning Conference and Training

Each year the Saratoga County Planning Department holds its Planning and Zoning Conference.  What began as a half-day session in 2005 with roughly 200 attendees, has transpired into a full day session with 16 course offerings which brings in approximately 525 registrants from numerous counties.  For information on past course offerings, conference materials, registration forms, and sponsorship opportunities, click on the link below.  The County Planning Department also holds several planning and zoning courses for individual planning and zoning boards within Saratoga County throughout the year.


Geographic Information Systems

The Planning Department hired a full-time GIS Technician in January of 2008 to assist Saratoga County’s departments and municipalities with various mapping and archiving needs.  Through this endeavor the planning department has been able to assist with the county’s E-911 system, election district and polling sites, environmental site planning, farmland and open space planning, snowmobile trail mapping, unique land-use planning, distribution of GIS data for educational purposes, and miscellaneous mapping and analysis of geographic relevance.  In addition to the Planning Department’s GIS repository which houses many unique datasets; the county employs and interactive GIS application via the internet which can be accessed here: Saratoga County Online Map Viewer.

Saratoga County Farmland and Open Space Program

In 2003, the county enacted the farmland and open space program.  The planning department works with a committee appointed by the Board of Supervisors to review applications and administer the program.  This program has preserved several thousand acres of farmland and open space since its inception.

Snowmobile Grants Program

Since 1996, the planning department has applied for and received funding from the  NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation for trail designation and funding to operate as part of the NYS Snowmobile Trail System.  The Saratoga County Association of Snowmobile Clubs is comprised of six clubs and covers more than 180 miles of groomed trails.

Saratoga County Industrial Development Agency

The Saratoga County Industrial Development Agency is a public benefit corporation created in 1971 to promote, develop, encourage, and assist in the construction, expansion, and equipping of economically sound industrial and commercial facilities in order to advance the job opportunities, general prosperity, and economic welfare of the citizens of Saratoga County.  In conjunction with the appointed CEO, the Saratoga County planning department provides full-time staff for the daily operations of the IDA.  To visit the IDA website, click here: Saratoga County Industrial Development Agency.

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